14-year-old AI cyberbullying victim talks about devastating experience on social media

A terrifying cyber-exploitation scheme turned Texas 14-year-old Alston Berry's life upside down last October when he discovered deeply fake nude photos of himself circulating on social media one morning.

To make matters worse, many of his classmates had already met him.

“[I was] Just expected a normal day, and I got multiple calls and messages from my friends telling me that these nude photos were going around,” she said on FOX Business' “Mornings With Mariah” on Wednesday. Remembered

“[They were going] All around the school — on Snapchat, Instagram, all the different social media,” she added.

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Elston Berry, a 14-year-old from Texas, said she was devastated to discover fake nudes of herself circulating on social media. (Maring/Screengrab/Morning with Fox News)

Barry's mother, Anna McAdams, also expected a normal day until her daughter arrived in her room, terrified and crying.

“She came in there showing me the pictures, and I was devastated and, as a mother, stunned. I mean, I couldn't protect my daughter,” she said Wednesday. said

McAdams told host Maria Bartiromo that the photos looked convincing.

On the deck of a cruise ship, one of Barry's clothes was replaced with a fake naked body. According to a Wall Street Journal report, other fake nudes of girls in her friend group were created using real beach photos.

“I recognized where she was,” McAdams said. “As a mother, I knew right away where the first picture was, but… if I didn't know that, and I was just looking at the picture, I would probably think it was real.”

Berry would later learn that a male classmate had set up the scheme by taking two photos from her private Instagram account and using AI software to expose her, the WSJ reported.

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This photo from “Mornings with Maria” details the bipartisan “Take It Down Act.” (Maring/Screengrab/Morning with Fox News)

The same male student was also behind these incidents.

Barry told the outlet that the ordeal made her feel “embarrassed and scared” at school, as she wondered if the students who confronted her had seen the photos and believed they were fake.

“I I felt like I had to tell everybody that it wasn't real and that I was, I was just fighting for what I thought was right,” she told Bartiromo.

Exploitative schemes have emerged as a significant ethical challenge as AI continues to proliferate, operating in the workforce, creative circles and elsewhere.

That has left lawmakers under pressure to do something about it.

Sen. Ted Cruz, Republican of Texas, and Sen. Amy Klobuchar, Democrat of Minnesota, are two of the bipartisan lawmakers sponsoring the “Take It Down Act,” which would criminalize the publication of non-consensual intimate photos, prompting the removal of the content. Social media platforms are needed for this. and more.

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“It's a sick and twisted pattern that's becoming more and more common. There are thousands and thousands of people who suffer like Elston,” Cruz said, sitting in the studio with Bartiromo, Berry and McAdams.

“Of the deeply fake photos that go online, up to 95% of them are unsolicited intimate photos, and the technology is such that you can take…. [innocent images] And you can turn them into pictures, you can turn them into videos. With technology, you can't tell they're fake. You think it's real. And this is a pattern that is being used for abuse. [mostly women and teenage girls]”

Cruz said the bill aims to bring prison time to offenders — two years if the crime is committed against an adult and three years if the victim is a minor.

He also stressed that such legislation would give social media platforms a legal obligation to step in and remove harmful images.

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